Hello, I am looking for someone to write an article on Power, Spectacle, and Memory. It needs to be at least 3000 words. The Sina Weibo case in China is just one example of how popular social media celebrities exert influence on their followers and how this can have a detrimental impact on the government in terms of policy changes. Charles Xue more commonly known by his Sina Weibo screen name Xue Manzi confessed to having made mistakes pertaining to his online posts on the social network (Zhai 2013, n.pag.). Xue confessed to his crimes as a microblogger on Sina Weibo where he presumably spread rumors (Custer 2013, n.pag.).
A charge was filed against Xue along with other microbloggers. However, Xue has set himself apart and is acting as an example to admit to his blogging crimes thereby helping the government to regulate the internet. At first, this might seem quite trivial however the impact of social networks on a country’s interest and government policies cannot be undermined. According to Shirky, the internet and social media are a place of varied players including citizens, activists, NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations), telecom companies, software houses, governments, and so on (2011, 1). The presence of various actors on the internet and social media has raised concerns regarding its ability to influence a particular country’s interests and government policies.
The social network Sina Weibo is extremely popular in China is known as “China’s Twitter” (“China’s Memory Hole” 2013, n.pag.). Xue has been known in the Weibo-sphere as a supporter of positive social causes including anti-kidnapping campaigns, clean water campaigns, etc, and has been known for his involvement in good causes as he spoke of the social media’s power to do good. However, his actions and confession send out a completely opposite message to his millions of fans and followers and Xue now seems to be remorseful. He hopes to set an example by admitting his online crimes and helping the government to regulate the content on the internet. Much of the concern regarding the regulation of the internet in particular social websites like Sina Weibo arises from the fact that pressure fuelled up by public opinion communicated over Weibo resulted in a change in government policy regarding air pollution.